As a renter, you may be unsure of what steps to take after you have suffered a loss to your apartment, rental home, and/or belongings. If you have a renters insurance policy, the following steps should be taken when reporting a claim to your insurance company.

First, promptly report the loss to your insurance company. The insurance company will want to know information such as the policy number, when the loss occurred, the cause of the loss, and what damage resulted.

Be sure to take pictures of the damage. Do not throw out any damaged items without first speaking with your insurance company.

If your personal property has been damaged as a result of the loss, be sure to create a list of the items damaged. Any receipts or pictures of the items are helpful in proving value and ownership. Depending on your policy, you may be able to seek reimbursement for your damaged items.

If you must leave the location because of the loss, be sure you keep your receipts for lodging or food. You may be able to recover these costs, depending on your policy.

It is important to mitigate the damage to your apartment or rental home. If you have a water loss, for example, take actions to prevent further water damage, such as tarping or shutting off the water. While temporary repairs should be performed to keep the damage from worsening, permanent repairs should not be done until the insurance company has reached a determination regarding coverage.